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MEPs vote against whistleblowers and perks cut-backs
Date 23/03/2012 08:53  Author webmaster  Hits 2312  Language Global
By Marta Andreasen MEP

MEPs in Brussels decided to vote against changes that would spell the end of ‘negative effects’ on staff who inform about ‘irregularities’ in budgets to their superiors.

They also voted against changes that would have placed time limits on generous expatriation allowances, household allowances and removal expenses all paid to EU staff out of the public purse.

The votes took place in Budgetary Control Committee – of which I am a member. Remember this is the committee supposedly responsible for ensuring fiscal restraint and financial probity at EU level!

So, when given the opportunity to support meaningful reforms MEPs instead decided the nose in trough mentality must prevail at all costs.

Governments across the EU are slashing their private sector provision and laying off staff, meanwhile in Brussels a civil servant can still receive an expatriation allowance even after having been in Brussels for over 20 years. They can get their removal costs fully reimbursed and just for being married they are entitled to a generous ‘household allowance’.

They can also receive children allowances and a host of other perks. This is a ludicrous situation at any time but all the more stinging to the public purse during a financial crisis.

Worse still MEPs don’t want to help those who spot irregularities in their department. Currently those that do spot problems are told to be quiet or face disciplinary action. In my case I was fired when I refused to back down.

It is a sad state of affairs when the Committee responsible for shining a torch on EU spending decides it is easier to just take the batteries out rather than make the right choices for taxpayers.